The Federation of Pharmaceutical manufacturers said that the organization is disappointed with the decision of the US authorities to support such steps.
The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA) believes that a possible decision to deviate from the intellectual property rights protection standards for coronavirus vaccines will only complicate the fight against the pandemic. The corresponding statement was published on the organization’s website.
“Deviating from the intellectual property rights protection standards for coronavirus vaccines will not lead to an increase in vaccine production and will not provide the practical solutions needed to combat this global health crisis. On the contrary, it is likely to lead to obstacles, while at the same time distracting from solving the real problems in increasing the number of vaccines produced and their distribution among countries<…>,” the text says.
In addition, the organization is disappointed by the decision of the US authorities to support such steps. In her opinion, such actions represent “a simple, but the wrong solution to a complex problem.” The association noted that the only way to increase the production of vaccines and ensure fair access to them for all those in need is a pragmatic and constructive dialogue with the private sector.
At a meeting of the WTO General Council in Geneva on Wednesday, it was decided to continue discussing the temporary waiver of patents for coronavirus drugs, given the scale of the pandemic. A similar proposal was made by India and South Africa at the end of last year. In their opinion, the introduction of temporary exemptions from intellectual property rights would make it possible to expand the production of coronavirus vaccines in the world. There is no consensus on this issue in the WTO yet. 60 of the 164 members of the organization, including Bolivia, Venezuela, Egypt, Mongolia, and Pakistan, now support the proposal by India and South Africa. On Wednesday, US trade negotiator Katherine Tai said the US administration supports the proposed steps on vaccine patents. WHO Chief Tedros Adanom Ghebreyesus welcomed the US decision.